The Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) has protested the promotion of smoking scenes in the Big Brother Naija (BBNaija) show in violation of the National Tobacco Control (NTC) Act 2015.
The Deputy Executive Director of the ERA/FoEN Akinbode Oluwafemi told newsmen in Abuja that Nigerians were shocked penultimate Tuesday when smoking scenes were glamourized in the ongoing BBNaija2018 show.
According to him two housemates were seen in the particular edition puffing away after one of them had a heated argument with fellow housemates.
“The smoking scene we refer to not only generated shock among Nigerians but also sparked calls for the BBNaija show to be banned. Thinking that the organizers would be remorseful after that show of shame, we learnt that the new head of the house announced a ban on alcohol and smoking. But that ban is only until Friday (February 23).
“For us, this arrogant and very disturbing trend has gone beyond the limits in offending the sensibilities of Nigerians who watch the series, many with their kids. Remarks on the subject credited to the Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Social Media, Lauretta Onochie is even less consoling,” Akinbode said.
According to him her advice to parents is to use their remote control to change the channel whenever obscenity is shown is hardly the answer that Nigerians want and that it was disturbing.
While urging the Nigeria Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) to sanction the station’s service providers for promoting smoking scenes on the show, he urged government at all levels and relevant agencies to begin enforcement of the nine key provisions of the NTC Act prohibiting smoking in public places and bans sale of cigarettes in single sticks, among others.
“Relevant agencies of government such as the Consumer Protection Council (CPC) and the security services begin a clampdown on infractions. The Federal Ministry of Health should urgently send the draft Regulations to the National Assembly for approval,” he said.
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